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  • Feb 22, 2012

    Goodbye, Scarlett...

  • Aug 19, 2011

    Summertime, swimming holes, watermelons and chigger bites

    Summer offered three months of near unfettered freedom to roam the woods, fish and swim in the creek, play baseball most every day and read books that we checked out from the book-mobile that made weekly stops at a nearby store. That was pleasure reading, not school work....More
  • Aug 11, 2011

    Good times for farm prices, but costs keep upward climb

    Good times for farm prices, but costs keep upward climb...More
  • Aug 4, 2011

    The debt ceiling farce: straining at gnats, accomplishing not much of anything

    The debt ceiling farce: straining at gnats, accomplishing not much of anything...More
  • Jul 29, 2011

    Rural population decline poses ag program challenges

    Farm spending makes a great target when so much of the U.S. budget is off limits. A recent report from the non-profit Population Reference Bureau explains why it is so easy to slice farm program funds. Few voters are affected. And the number decreases all the time....More
  • Jul 18, 2011

    Research-based production practices form the backbone of successful farms

    Spanning the Peanut Belt, from Texas, Georgia and North Carolina, the winners of the Farm Press 2011 Peanut Profitability Awards all are quick to admit they could not have reached this achievement on their own. There are many factors involved in achieving a farming success, not the least of which are the basic, everyday production practices that are based on painstaking research....More
  • Jun 23, 2011

    Who wants to be a millionaire? It’s not as great as it once was…

    Who wants to be a millionaire? Well, it’s not as great as it once was…...More
  • Jun 20, 2011

    Drought of 2011 one of most depressing to cover

    I’ve written about a lot of droughts in the course of more than 30 years reporting on agriculture. And I’ve probably written about more droughts in the 12 years (since 1999) I’ve been working the Southwest than I did in all the years I covered the Southeast. It seems that a drought exists somewhere in this region all the time....More
  • Jun 3, 2011

    Manure, farmer’s markets: solution for a growing world’s food needs?

    Manure and farmer's markets: The solution for a growing world's food needs?...More
  • Jun 2, 2011

    Parts of Southeast recover from tornadoes as agricultural groups show generosity

    Alabama and other areas of the Southeast are still picking up the pieces following a rash of spring tornadoes unlike anything that has been seen in the region in decades. The only people who had seen something remotely similar were those who have witnessed first-hand the total destruction and carnage of war, and they certainly never expected to see the same devastation in their own backyards....More
  • May 26, 2011

    Be prepared for tornadoes in rural areas

    Rural areas seldom have the warning systems available to those of us who live in town. And, even if they do, farmers and ranchers are often caught out in the elements, away from anything but the most basic shelter....More
  • May 5, 2011

    Priorities of new state legislatures disappointing to many in agriculture

    When many state legislatures were cleansed by the voters this past election, we hoped for better, even though for some of us, our general opinion of politicians is so deeply ingrained by now that it’s not likely to change significantly. And though they’ve been in office for only a few short months, some of our newly elected office-holders already have proven themselves unworthy, a couple of cases in point being the recent actions of legislators in Alabama and Georgia....More
  • Apr 20, 2011

    Farm visit is ideal Earth Day activity

    I celebrated Earth Day a few days early this year – Tuesday, April 19....More
  • Apr 11, 2011

    We love big in America, but look who’s bucking the trend

    We like big in America, but one of the biggest stores in America is planning to downsize....More
  • Apr 5, 2011

    Ongoing challenge to growers: boost per acre yields even more

    As U.S. food, feed, and fiber producers are confronted with increasing and more diverse demand, they will be challenged to expand the boundaries of productivity even farther....More
  • Mar 22, 2011

    Annual exercise in frustration: calculating the income tax bill

    Could the taxation process be made simpler? Of course it could. But how much screaming would arise from the many thousands of tax prep businesses that owe their existence to the average person’s inability to deal with the hopelessly complex process of paying taxes?...More
  • Mar 15, 2011

    Sustainable agriculture warm, fuzzy, indefinable

    Sustainable agriculture cannot be clearly defined — yet it is a warm and fuzzy term to consumers, especially since the alternative is unsustainable and who wants to support unsustainable? Some consumers call it nothing more than a PR buzzword, like natural and green. It has an inherent rightness with consumers, particularly since someone else — the farmer — is the one charged with being sustainable....More
  • Mar 11, 2011

    Observant readers catch editor’s error 1

    In a recent commentary about picking cotton—actually about my mother picking cotton since I was of little use in the endeavor, being only four or five years old at the time—I was guilty of a math error....More
  • Feb 24, 2011

    Cotton mill tour rekindles memories

    The first real job, the first work I did for which I got a company paycheck, was in a cotton mill. The summer after I graduated from high school my dad pulled some strings, 100 percent cotton I suspect, and got me a job on the first shift at the Dan River Cotton Mill in Liberty, S.C....More
  • Feb 21, 2011

    I remember picking cotton as a kid but it wasn’t worth $2 a pound in ‘53

    If cotton had been selling for $2 a pound when I was a kid, my whole life might have changed. One of my first memories is picking cotton with my mom in a field beside the frame house she and dad rented....More
  • Feb 3, 2011

    It’s a good day to work from home

    On days like this I’m glad I work from home....More
  • Jan 24, 2011

    Trip to BCS National Championship Game about more than just football

    For those of you who are not college football fans, and for those who are but who were not cheering for Auburn University on Jan. 10, allow me a brief indulgence while I reflect upon my recent trip to the BCS National Championship Game in Glendale, Ariz....More
  • Jan 12, 2011

    Dick Winters, a true American hero, dead at 92

    Major Dick Winters, hero of Band of Brothers book, TV series, has died....More
  • Jan 11, 2011

    Another Beltwide success story 1

    We have achy feet, sore backs, bloodshot eyes and tinges of carpal tunnel syndrome from relentless typing and scribbling notes. Acid reflux has been our constant companion for the past three days and we’ve missed more sleep than a typical first-semester college freshman pledging a fraternity. We’ve survived another Beltwide Cotton Conference....More
  • Jan 7, 2011

    North Alabama’s “Farmer Emeritus” shares rich life expriences with others

    It has been noted recently that the overall number of World War II veterans is shrinking rapidly, at the rate of about 900 per day, and as these members of this “Greatest Generation” pass from among us, many of their stories go with them. In recognition of this, scholars, historians and others are diligently interviewing and talking with surviving veterans to help insure their life experiences are recorded for posterity’s sake, and rightfully so....More
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